Dow Posts First Nine-Day Win Streak in 16 Years

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"This morning, we learned February retail sales increased by 1.1%, which was much better than what was expected by most economists," said Schaeffer's Senior Equity Analyst Joe Bell on a day that saw the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) rally behind these strong figures to push its winning streak to nine days -- the first time in 16 years that has happened. "This positive news has allowed the consumer discretionary sector to outperform the broad market on a day where we didn't get much movement overall."

Continue reading for more on today's market, including :

  • Schaeffer's Senior Options Strategist Tony Venosa, CMT, provides his seven reasons why investors should buy Walgreen Company ( WAG ) on its current breakout.
  • Our Senior Trading Analyst Bryan Sapp details the impact of those retail numbers; plus, analysis of Suncor Energy ( SU ).
  • Our Weekly Contrarian: Can Google Inc ( GOOG ) reach $1,000 a share any time soon?
plus...
  • The Dow makes it nine wins in a row, more about those retail sales numbers, and how Facebook ( FB ) option traders reacted to the big announcement regarding Netflix ( NFLX ).

Boosted by stronger-than-anticipated retail sales numbers, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) kept its nine-day winning streak alive. But the race to the finish was a close one, and the index's six-day streak of new all-time intraday highs was snapped. The Dow gained more than 5 points, or less than 0.1%, to finish at 14,455.28. The 30-member Dow saw half its members advance, led by International Business Machines (IBM) and Boeing (BA), which each climbed 0.7%. The 15 decliners were paced by Alcoa (AA), which fell 0.9%.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX) also gained, picking up 2 points, or 0.1%, to close at 1,554.52. The Nasdaq Composite (COMP) finished at 3,245.12, up nearly 3 points, or 0.1%.

The CBOE Market Volatility Index (VIX) fell 0.4 point, or 3.6%, to close at 11.83.

A Trader's Take :

"The Dow continued its unbelievable streak of positive days," Bell noted. "Although the moves haven't been all that impressive, the nine consecutive positive days is still remarkable, as it hasn't happened since late 1996."

CLOSING SUMMARY - INDICES

CLOSING SUMMARY - NYSE AND NASDAQ

3 Things to Know About Today's Market :

  • As stated, retail sales grew 1.1% in February -- the largest gain in five months -- which surpassed economists' estimates. (MarketWatch)
  • A day after the House Republicans submitted their federal budget proposal, the Senate Democrats unveiled their first such proposal in four years Wednesday, setting the stage for what is sure to be a long and drawn-out debate over government spending and taxes. (CNBC)
  • And two tech giants teamed up today, with Netflix ( NFLX ) adding a feature to allow U.S. subscribers to share movie and TV recommendations on the social network Facebook ( FB ). (CBS MoneyWatch)

5 Stocks We Were Watching Today :

  1. Both call and put traders were active on Facebook ( FB ) in light of its aforementioned pairing with Netflix ( NFLX ).
  2. One options strategist pulled off a short straddle on videogame maker Electronic Arts (EA), looking for the stock to stagnate over the next month.
  3. Caesars Entertainment Corp (CZR) jumped out of the gate today, but option traders weren't buying it, as put traders swarmed the casino operator.
  4. Option traders looked for a short-term downturn in Best Buy (BBY), but might be disappointed, given the stock's recent rise up the charts.
  5. Put traders bet that today's downturn in Cisco Systems (CSCO) would continue into next month.

EARNINGS

For a look at today's options movers and commodities activity, head to page 2.

STOCKS - NOTABLE CALL ACTIVITY

STOCKS - NOTABLE PUT ACTIVITY

Commodities :

Oil prices fell for the first time in five days on news of a weekly build in crude supplies, combined with a stronger dollar. April crude closed at $92.52 down 2 cents, or less than 0.1%.

Gold also fell on stronger-than-expected retail sales, which boosted the dollar. April gold futures closed at $1,588.40, down $3.30, or 0.2%. Gold had hit just below the $1,600-an-ounce threshold in intraday trading.

SCHAEFFER'S MARKET POSTURE

At the end of every market day, the staff at Schaeffer's Investment Research reviews the trading day in detail, covering major events and key market developments. Don't miss this critical, timely and insightful report. If you enjoyed today's edition of Market Recap, sign up here for free daily delivery straight to your inbox.



The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc.

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This article appears in: Investing , Options

Referenced Stocks: FB , GOOG , NFLX , SU , WAG

Schaeffer's Investment Research

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